A letter to indie bands.

San Cisco, “Awkward”

Awkward, 2012

Dear indie bands,

Just because you are young and have possession of a guitar and tight jeans does not necessarily mean you should release an EP….or actually, a song. Or really any sort of musical sequence of notes. Please, just…don’t. Because I don’t know how much more repetitive, cutesy indie pop the Australian music industry can handle.

Awkward is the debut single from Perth band San Cisco, from the EP of the same name, and it’s the pinnacle of Australian indie pop. It’s not a bad debut, really, but the single itself is drearily repetitive, bouncy and lacking in any sort of musical dynamics.

It starts with the obligatory bright, clear guitar, strumming high chords at an upbeat tempo. The drums are also predictably plain, a simple beat being played with no life whatsoever. They’re just meant to hum along whilst the vocals come in and do their thing, but unfortunately, the vocals offer up nothing interesting at all, resorting to the semi -talking, heavily accented style that has dominated the indie world for far too long.

The vocals are a conversation between a boy and a girl, and are so lacking in inspiration it’s slightly embarrassing. Not to mention the chorus, which goes like this:

“da da da da da da da da da
da da da da da da da da da da da da”

Yep. That’s it.

The one asset this song has is that it’s incredibly catchy, no doubt because at no point during the song does the sound change; it’s impossible for it not to get stuck in your head.

There’s one huge problem with this type of song, and it’s this: it doesn’t go anywhere. There’s no bridge to speak of, there’s no key change, there’s absolutely nothing to interest the ear beyond the inane lyrics.

No doubt San Cisco will become indie heroes, but whether that actually involves having any sort of musical knowledge is yet to be seen.


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